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:: The Blackthorn Pipers’ Society, which meets in Dromore and which has in the past secured the services of such luminaries as Gordon Walker for its recitals, continues its new season by meeting one Wednesday a month in the town's Thyme Square Bistro from 7.

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:: Stormont Education Minister John O’Dowd yesterday announced £112,000 in funding for a bagpipe and highland dance tuition pilot project in schools in Derry and Strabane, when more than 300 pupils will benefit from opportunities to learn.

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:: In a post-script to the third annual Belfast Tattoo earlier this month, the organisers have revealed that this year's event had its most wide-reaching audience participation so far, with tickets being sold to customers from as far away as the USA, Canada and Australia.

Piping schools open registrations for new academic year

THE new academic year is about to begin at the north's two music schools which, while rival operations, are equally tasked with churning out the next batch of talented pipers and drummers and ensuring the future for this genre of music is safe.

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AFTER what's been a monumentally successful season for Irish pipe bands in the five global majors, attention now turns to which of the plethora of prize-winning ensembles will see themselves elevated to a higher grade in 2016.

Acts from Canada, Italy and Netherlands join Belfast Tattoo

THE biggest-ever Belfast Tattoo opened at the newly-named SSE Arena last night with 600 performers showcasing some of the finest marching bands, musicians, and dancers from Ireland and further afield in a two hour show climaxed by a grand finale of the massed pipe and drums.

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